Lifespan of Social Networking


We all know that social networking sites are being used by more and more people. Yes, sites such as FB are currently dominating the Internet. According to some sources 50% of the US population log onto FB at least once a month, with only around 7% utilising Twitter. 

However, what is the lifespan of sites such as FB? Does it have such a large market share now that it will be around forever? Some experts suggest that it really only has between 3-5 years left before running out of steam. Others suggest it could start declining in as little as 1-2 years.

If you were to look at the interface of FB, it is really poor and with the issues around privacy it certainly has a long way to go before it gains any level of trust. It is said that the reason it has so many members is simply because it has become a place people feel they need to be in order to connect. So in respect to that momentum, they have done a good job. However if you talk to people, I am yet to hear a single person who says they trust the site.

MySpace which used to dominate the market is on the market and the rumour mill says that one of the interested parties may be Zynga. Now Zynga has been credited with a lot of the growth in FB and to some degree it is a fact. Would Zynga moving out over time from FB see a decrease in users? Maybe, maybe not.

Even though FB has such a huge audience, it probably would’nt take much for it to be obliterated. Even though it would take time, it seems that it would only take a new and innovative developer to come up with something that grabs people attention to start a battle for the top spot. It could also be as simple as natural death. What I mean is with the growing use of FB for Pages and Groups if it becomes dominated in some area it could become too busy for people. If you listen to a lot of the experts, there is a sense out there that the novelty is starting to wear off. Status updates more often then not are either becoming like pity parties or people are posting too much.

I am hearing more and more reports of employers now including in their employment contracts that employees must not have a FB profile. This seems to be a growing trend. I won’t speculate on the reason for this becoming more prominent because I haven’t heard the arguments, but it is happening.

Really this type of site is volatile and I believe if people had an alternative for connecting with others they probably would take up the option. Yes they would probably run with both for a while but eventually would migrate to just one. The future will be interesting.